Aroostook Community Matters: Jenna’s Helping Hands

Published: Nov. 4, 2022 at 9:45 AM EDT
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - A Madawaska family recently opened a new thrift store in Frenchville to commemorate the life of their daughter and to help the community. In this week’s Aroostook Community Matters, WAGM reporter Isaac Potter takes a look at Jenna’s Helping Hands.

Thad Guillemette and Karen Cyr of Madawaska lost their daughter Jenna-Marie Guillemette in a sudden medical event. They wanted to keep her name and memory going in a way that she would approve of. So, Jenna’s Helping Hands Was born.

Thad Guillemette, Co-Owner, Jenna’s Helping Hands, says “My daughter is a rock star. Her first job was working for the local food bank and she fell in love with charitable work. She was class president; she was the president of the Valley Unified school committee here. She worked on a lot of social problems and helped out a lot of people. She was pre-enrolled into Farmington, and she loved charity.”

Guillemette says while the actual timing of opening last week of the thrift store in FRENCHVILLE took a little while, the process felt fast for the family.

Thad Guillemette: “It took a two-year process, acquiring the building and getting enough donations, working with the town. It seems that this happened very fast for us. We haven’t had a thrift store in Madawaska for a few years now and since COVID everybody has been piled up in the basement with all their left-over nick nacks and they are very happy to have a place now to give it away.”

The store will be offering used items for sale at the store, but will also be providing free clothing, school supplies, and personal hygiene products to students who show their school card.

Thad Guillemette: “Any student that is going to the Valley Schools, all they have to do is bring in their school card and they can shop here for free. During prom time, anybody that is in need of a prom dress or a prom suit, please come see us. We will set you up, we will have a tailor, that way you can enjoy yourself during prom or any type of formal experience that you have. Anything that we can do to give back to the community, that’s what we’re here for.”

For more information, visit Jenna’s Helping Hands on Facebook. Isaac Potter, News Source 8.